Why do we continue to do the same things over and over again even though we intuitively know that that specific course of action may not be the best for us? You know those situations or people our family and friends are trying to warn us about. There are several forces at play: curiosity, familiarity, fear of missing out/losing an opportunity, and/or uncertainty.
Even if we know the most likely outcomes, there is a part of us that wants to see how a situation will play out. “Is it really going to be as bad as everyone is making it out to be?” “What ridiculous thing is going to happen next?” In a way, this type of chaos can add excitement (albeit negative) to an otherwise possibly mundane life.
When people grow up in unstable environments, the chaos can actually be stimulating, because the mind and body get conditioned to adapt to unpredictability. So, less than favorable circumstances may be a source of comfort for some individuals.
Most situations aren’t black and white; there is a grey area. From an outside perspective, something may look like a complete lose-lose proposition and you wonder why someone is doing totally rash and illogical things. The truth is, nearly everybody is motivated by their deepest desires AND deficits so the emotions and impulses will win out more often than not. Those who own up to their vulnerabilities are much less likely to succumb to these ambiguous situations.
Other times, people settle for things, because they are unsure of the other options. They are afraid of the possibility of taking a step forward just to fall a few steps back. The emphasis gets placed on the lost potential rather than the long-term benefits.
Thoughts for the Week
Remember, there are opportunities everywhere as long you frame your mindset in terms of abundance instead of scarcity. The hard part is to open ourselves up to a broad range of trajectories and outcomes as opposed to keeping to the narrow scope of what we already know. The essence of letting go of control.